Market research shows that home care across the globe is experiencing an unprecedented growth rate of nearly nine per cent each year.
Amid this growth are key items to consider. One is that the forced consolidation of service providers is driving some of this growth. Meanwhile, many small and medium businesses (SMBs) are themselves part of an aging population and facing the prospect of succession planning. What’s more, a rising focus on care quality, the need for reduced margins, and the challenge of caregiver shortage points to a capital expenditure investment in technology -- which many SMBs aren’t ready or willing to undertake.
All of this naturally leads to an environment where larger agencies acquire smaller ones and are looking to scale. For the acquired it means an upfront windfall of funds. For the acquirer, it is a company to help accelerate the scaling of business.
Agencies looking to grow in today’s market require a vision that is unique, defendable, and sustainable. They must erect the infrastructure to support that vision, which includes the people of course, but also includes the technology. Many service provider agencies grapple with the need for change while not compromising their business-as-usual work that has kept the lights on all these years.
Where we are today
Now, agencies are seeking to preserve the core of their business while transforming the future. Technology is the element of business that, if adaptable and built to last, does this exact work inherently.
Fee-for-service funded homecare must remain a stable, reliable source of revenue. Yet an increased emphasis on quality and outcome drives that need for innovation. And the health-care landscape is evolving with new models of care, reimbursement rules, virtual care, consumer-first care, and delegation of authority to name a few. In short, the industry is poised for considerable disruption.
Technology plays a big role in adapting to the new reality. That’s why today we see wearables, artificial intelligence, remote monitoring, and predictive analytics on the upswing: because they are key to a lasting vision and a unique service delivery.
Where we’ll be tomorrow
What does the future hold? While there’s no crystal ball, things are moving so quickly the road ahead is far less foggy than it used to be.
It’s clear that consumers are taking control of their own health-care and information, in line with what is developing in other industries. They will move from hopefully being considered part of their care team to being active participants in managing symptoms and quality of life.
The role of structured data and clinical systems will emerge in order to predict and prevent health complications and hospital admissions, while achieving better outcomes.
That road to the future is paved with integrated, virtual and collaborative care models. Coordination will remain a major factor in reducing health-care expenditures, supporting home care agencies, and vastly improving the patient experience. Silos will disappear and information will flow securely along the continuum.
For those authorized to use it: on-demand data, in real time, on any screen.
How do we get there?
How does the agency of the future position itself to win this race? In a disrupted home care market, implementing the right technology and having the best people in place will yield positive returns.
At AlayaCare, we try and view the home care world through the lens of a service provider. There is no single solution, or a cluster of solutions that completely give an agency the freedom, flexibility and speed to keep up with innovation.
So with that in mind, the answer isn’t a system but instead an ecosystem. Agencies of the future have a unique opportunity to help build that ecosystem with partners such as hospitals, health networks, software vendors, application providers, and novel start-up companies.
At the root of this ecosystem is API lifecycle management. This vision can connect elements like enterprise resource planning, human resource management systems, scheduling, remote patient monitoring, electronic health records, mobile apps, and the “Internet of Things.”
AlayaCare understands how this all fits together, and has written extensively on APIs and achieving true interoperability.
Connect with us today to learn more.